A make-ahead, refreshing, yet hearty vegetable-dense soup using cabbage and simple ingredients packed with flavor.
Cabbage soup and I go way back — my mother used to make a variation of this soup during the winter months using chunks of carrots, rich chicken broth and served with a dollop of sour cream and dill. I was deeply inspired by my mother’s recipe for cabbage soup and made a couple tweaks that I personally enjoy, including extra caramelized onions, more garlic, and a different mix of seasonings including ground cumin and some heat from red pepper flakes.
For most of us, cabbage goes under the radar when it comes to its culinary use and health benefits. In the 80’s cabbage soup was a weight-loss trend because it’s lower in calories, but that’s not why I think it deserves some extra love and attention. Cabbage might look like lettuce, but it’s actually part of the same cruciferous vegetable family as kale, broccoli, and cauliflower (1). These vegetables contain antioxidants that may help in the reduction of inflammation (2) and polyphenols that help protect the body against damage caused by free radicals.
Cabbage is also rich in vitamin B6 and folate, which support several of our body’s vital systems with cell growth and development, it has vitamin C which boosts immunity, and it’s rich in fiber which we know is great for our digestion, keeping our blood sugars stable, and keeps us feeling fuller longer. Talk about a hero of an ingredient!
Soups are some of my favorite dishes to make on batch cooking day and I encourage you to do the same — it makes your week a breeze when it comes to having healthy home-cooked meals ready to eat. Soups are also great in that they reward you for your patience, they have a slow-building of fragrant flavors and blend of simple, whole-food ingredients cooked down to be easy for your body to digest and put to good use.